So much for football team having another letdown.
Last year, after going 10-0, and finishing the season ranked No. 2 in the AP poll, the Eagles were stunned in the playoffs.
For some, it's motivation. For others, it can send a team into a downward spiral, as they ask questions of themselves.
Against in the season opener on Thursday night at the Avon Middle School stadium, those thoughts were quelled quickly as the Eagles dominated the Shoremen from start to finish in a 38-7 old-fashioned shellacking.
Avon held powerful Avon Lake to just eight first downs, and dominated in time of possession and also yards (382-181). They also led in the turnover department and that played a huge role too in the Eagles being able to jump all over the Shoremen.
Defense was a key to that, but Avon's Justin O'Rourke was the difference-maker. On the night the first-year starter had four touchdown passes, including a beauty early to Matt Eckhardt for 35 yards after an Avon Lake miscue in the first quarter. It took all of one play and seemed to take the wind out of the Shormen's sails.
The Avon signal-caller finished with 230 yards on the night, including a 25 yard, 12 yard and six yard touchdown pass, two more of them to Eckhardt.
"Me and Matt have been playing since eighth grade, so its nothing new," O'Rourke said. "I was calm, the past two year taught me lessons on how to be calm. We played a great game, we just came out and wanted it more, I was definitely pumped up."
He refused though to take any credit, instead deferring it to his teammates.
"The first two touchdowns, that was out defense, they were amazing," O'Rourke said. "I also owe it to the coaches for great preparation. Our receivers had a great game and so did our line -- I had great protection back there. We have to keep it up."
Ekhardt said it was a statement game.
"Coming in we were very prepared and stopped the run, and held them around the edge, and filled our garps." Eckhardt said. "It's also nice to know last year wasn't a fluke. But its just one game.
"Since the day we lost last year, we’ve taken that motivation and we put into this offseason and I think it’s going to show this season just like it did tonight."
Ross Douglas also played a huge role in the win with his play on both sides of the ball. In the first half with four seconds left in the game he scored from six yards out, and then he had a monster interception of 41 yards to set up one of O'Rourke's touchdown passes in the second half.
Avon coach Mike Elder downplayed the win, but also talked about the way his defense played.
"Tonight, we won the turnover battle and we won the game,” said Elder. “Our kids understand how important it is to protect the ball.”
The Eagles have now won two in a row against Avon Lake, and in the series are 13-16 against them.
Shoremen coach Dave Dlugosz wasn't shy to offer his insight into the loss.
"We have kids starting for their first time," he said. " All those worries you have happened -- fumbles, interceptions and penalties. If you give them extra possessions, you’re going to have all kinds of problems."